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Bee Behavior and Biology

I’ve ordered these articles to help you better understand bee behavior.


The Primer Pheromones and Managing the Labor Pool – Part 3

First published in: American Bee Journal June 2010

I left you last month in the middle of explaining the current model for colony workforce allocation, and the influence of various primer pheromones. Please allow me to pick up where I left off. (Having trouble hitting the keys with my cold fingers—I’ve just pulled off my wet coveralls, and am trying to revitalize myself […]

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The Primer Pheromones, Part 4 – Reproduction and Survival

First published in: American Bee Journal July 2010

Queen Pheromone(s) We humans hear the term “queen” and immediately project all the royal attributes of leadership and omnipotence upon the mother of the colony. But is this really the case? Does the queen bee really “rule” the colony, with the sterile workers acting as subordinate subjects? The feeling that I get is that bee […]

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Old Bees/ Cold bees/ No bees? Part 1

by Randy Oliver   “There’s something happening here/ What it is ain’t exactly clear.” This observation by Stephen Stills in 1966 could well describe the state of beekeeping today. Something appears to be amiss in the bee population. There have been an inordinate number of colonies collapsing, sometimes with the workers disappearing “suddenly.” The catch […]

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Old Bees/ Cold bees/ No bees? Part 2

by Randy Oliver One day during his tenure as a professor, Albert Einstein was visited by a student. “The questions on this year’s exam are the same as last year’s!” the young man exclaimed. “Yes,” Einstein answered, “but this year all the answers are different.” Beekeepers today may feel that they are in a similar […]

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